Stratified Risk Score Developed for Burkitt's Lymphoma

Brown University researchers have developed a stratified risk score for patient prognosis in the treatment response of patients with Burkitt’s lymphoma.

The team of researchers was lead by Dr. Jorge Castillo, an assistant professor of medicine at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and a hematology/oncology specialist at Rhode Island Hospital.

The study

Castillo and colleagues looked at the records of 2,284 Burkitt's patients during a period of 11 years.

Using factors including survival rates, age, race, cancer location and cancer stage they created a risk score. Patients with the lowest score have a 7 of 10 chance of survival with treatment, while patients with a 10 have less than 3 in 10 chance of survival.

The findings

Investigators determined that age plays a huge role in survival; notably, patients older than 80 have a five times higher risk of dying from the disease than patients aged 20-39 years. Furthermore, advanced stage Burkitt's (Stage IV) patients are almost two and a half times at greater risk of of dying compared to those in early stages (Stage I).

Looking at the positive

Some good news included the fact that survival rates have been boosted substantially over time. For the younger patients, the rate of overall survival in 1998 was 34.7 percent compared to 62.1 percent today for this same patient population.

Oncologists can use this score to help them make treatment decisions as well as inform patients on their choices.

Burkitt's lymphoma is a rare subtype of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. It is of B-cell origin and represents fewer than 2 percent of all lymphoid cancers.

Source: doctortipster

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